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Posts Tagged ‘Wuthering Heights’

Fairy-tale Ending

September 15, 2015 | by

From “Wuthering Heights.”

Once upon a time, a newly married couple rode an old train from Myrdal to Flåm. The train passed through mountains and valleys, past waterfalls and vast lakes. Often the climb was dramatically steep, the hairpin turns almost impossibly sharp. The passengers ran from window to window in a frenzy of excitement, exclaiming at the vivid scenery, blinking in wonder when the train emerged from a tunnel. 

A voice spoke to the passengers, first in Norwegian, then in German, then English. The voice spoke of gradients and history: of the men who had built tracks from wood and stone and the many people who had ridden on the red seats of the old train. And there were legends, too: this was folklore country. The land through which the train was passing was said to be haunted by trolls and fays. The valleys were home to the Hulder, a forest siren who lured mortals with her unearthly song. The bride squeezed her husband’s hand in excitement. Here was magic; here was darkness. Read More »

Emily Brontë’s Boring Birthday

July 30, 2014 | by


Emily’s portrait by her brother, Branwell.

It’s Emily Brontë’s birthday, and wouldn’t you know it—of her famously scarce surviving documents, several are letters written on and about the anniversary of her birth. Imagine! Rare glimpses into the thoughts of the most inscrutable Brontë sister! As Robert Morss Lovett wrote in The New Republic in 1928, Emily “was the household drudge … the ways by which her spirit grew into greatness and by what experience it was nourished, remain a mystery.”

And her biography at the Poetry Foundation deepens the mystique:

She is alternately the isolated artist striding the Yorkshire moors, the painfully shy girl-woman unable to leave the confines of her home, the heterodox creator capable of conceiving the amoral Heathcliff, the brusque intellect unwilling to deal with normal society, and the ethereal soul too fragile to confront the temporal world.

Let us turn, then, with not undue trepidation, to the letters themselves, precious reflections from one of English fiction’s brightest luminaries. A note from July 30, 1845, begins: Read More »


Too Hot, Too Greedy

July 30, 2013 | by

Close watchers of this space may observe that we have, in the past, posted the iconic video for “Wuthering Heights.” But when we realized that today was not just Emily Brontë’s birthday but also Kate Bush’s, well, you can see that we had no alternative. 



Daydream Believer

November 15, 2012 | by

The daydreaming thing was my brother’s fault. He went to Virginia Tech from 1970 to 1975. The fifth year wasn’t because he was dim; as an architecture major he was required to stay ten semesters. Sometime in that span, on one of our eight-hour family trips from New Jersey to drop him off or pick him up, my parents took me to Luray Caverns. I must’ve been about eleven years old.

God almighty! Who knew they kept all that stuff underground? I was agog! Great dripstone formations that looked like melting candles. Stalactites and mites the shades of fall vegetables and seashells. If Luray wasn’t exactly the hidden world I’d been looking for, it was something close: it was the key that freed my imagination from my own experience. (About three or four years earlier I’d sat straight up in bed one night, shaking from the sudden, unwished-for understanding that one day I would die and there would be no more me on earth. I understood this not only as a personal catastrophe but a tragedy for the world as well. What would it do without me? That moment, I think, paved the way for my imagination to gallop ahead of my life in the here and now. It prepared me for Luray.) Read More »


Tiny Books, Wuthering Napa

September 28, 2012 | by

  • Behold! The world’s smallest book! Teeny Ted from Tunip Town was etched on a microchip with an ion beam and can only be read via scanning electron microscope.
  • Presented without comment: “This time, we’ll be finding the dapper but doomed lovebirds, Heathcliff and Catherine (or will it be Heath and Kate?) in modern day Napa Valley. Greg Berlanti, the creator and writer of Everwood, Jack & Bobby, and Arrow, and Tom Donaghy of The Whole Truth are developing a pilot for the hour-long drama, currently titled Napa.”
  • Barnes & Noble goes … paperless?
  • The reviews for J. K. Rowling are in, and they’re … tepid. Except when they’re not. Except when the reviewer hasn’t actually read the book.
  • "A Chicago high school guidance counselor and former girls’ basketball coach filed a lawsuit against his school district for firing him after the release of his graphic book on relationship advice. He claims that his First Amendment rights have been violated and is seeking $1 million from the district.” Enough said, really.




    The Smell of Books; the Power of ‘Wuthering Heights’

    April 12, 2012 | by

  • The Department of Justice is suing several large publishers, plus Apple, for alleged price collusion on e-books.
  • How not to squander a book advance: a primer from Emily Gould. (Hint: leather vests don’t count as investments, whatever the lady at the shop may say.)
  • Meanwhile at the Awl: how not to ruin a book tour. Servicey!
  • Wuthering Heights … home of wind turbines? Concerns over wind farms in Brontë country.
  • While rhapsodizing about the “smell of books” is something of a personal peeve, this video, in which University College London chemists analyze the distinctive perfume, is interesting. Apparently, the bouquet is “a combination of grassy notes with a tang of acids and a hint of vanilla over an underlying mustiness.”
  • Welcome to the Storyverse.
  • Günter Grass speaks out on his ban from Israel.